Fourth of July plans? Don’t forget to include a sober ride home

BOISE – As Idahoans prepare to celebrate Independence Day, the Idaho Transportation Department (ITD) and partners across the state encourage everyone to include a sober ride home in their holiday plans.

ITD’s Office of Highway Safety (OHS) has partnered with law enforcement agencies across Idaho to devote extra resources to stopping impaired drivers around the Fourth of July. More police will be on patrol from June 30 through July 9.

“When you are making your holiday plans, they should include a sober ride home whether that’s a cab, rideshare, designated driver, or celebrating in a place where you don’t need to drive,” said Highway Safety Manager Josephine Middleton. “Always have a plan before you start drinking. If you wait until after you may be too impaired to make the safe choice.”

Idaho is also in the middle of the 100 Deadliest Days, the time between Memorial Day and Labor Day when Idaho sees a spike in fatal and serious injury crashes. In the last 31 days, at least 19* people have been killed in crashes on Idaho roads. In the summertime, people are off from school or work, enjoying vacations, engaging in recreational activities, and celebrating. Unfortunately, these social factors result in an increase in distracted driving, aggressive driving, and impaired driving, which makes the roads riskier for everyone, including those who are driving safely and responsibly.

For the Fourth of July and the rest of the summer remember these safe driving tips:

  • Always wear a seat belt. Seat belts increase your chance of surviving a crash by 50 percent.
  • Put away the distractions and drive engaged.
  • Never drink and drive. If you have a friend who is about to drive drunk, be courageous, take away their keys and help them get home safely.
  • Drive the speed limit, or slower if conditions are bad.
  • On two-lane roads, if there are more than three cars behind you, pull over in a safe place to let them pass.

*Preliminary Data